Go to Menu Free résumé critiques:
The new career-industry racket
By Nick Corcodilos

First it was online job boards. All the jobs, all the résumés for all the people. Just go online and your job-hunting problems are solved. Monster.com, CareerBuilder and HotJobs became the big career-industry rackets: They rack up huge revenues and profits, while their success rates hover under 5%. Job hunters and employers get fleeced daily, paying lots of cash for "platinum-level" services and "higher rankings" for your résumés and jobs.

Then it got better. TheLadders gave us "Only $100k+ jobs. Only $100k+ candidates." And the only problem is that it's a lie. It's another racket designed to fleece job hunters and employers alike.

Now certain companies that sell résumé-writing services are using a new ploy to sucker job hunters: Free résumé critiques that lure you into the clutches of résumé mills. (You might find one of these offers in the ads to the right. Sorry, but as long as I rely on automated ads to help pay for this free advice you're reading, I can't filter the good ads from the bad ones. I'll do my job and write good advice. You do your job and be a smart consumer.)

Before we get into the details, I'll repeat what I've said for years. Write your own résumé. Yes, it can be like having a baby -- painful but illuminating. And worth the effort.

If you're going to get help, however, make sure you get good help. There are many skilled, credible résumé writers who will treat you and your career with respect and care. You'll know them because they will spend a lot of time talking with you to assess what your talents and abilities are so they can best present them to the companies you want to work for.

But if a résumé writer relies only on forms that you fill out, think again. Are you paying to fill out forms, or for help interpreting your skills so you can be portrayed accurately on a piece of paper? The best résumé writers will talk with you extensively and coach you based on the particulars of your background and needs. They're not cheap -- but they're honest.

Cookie-cutter résumés
When I first started headhunting I noticed a trend in the résumés I received. There were three kinds. Some were clumsy but honest. Some were well-written and thorough. But many were fancy and suspiciously similar. These latter ones were often printed on the same paper. I could pick out certain of the "professionally-written" résumés with just a glance. They featured the same "action verbs", the same bullet lists, and the same layout. They were full of boilerplate text and they went straight into the trash basket.

Cookie-cutter résumés -- those written from templates -- surface on employer's desks every day. The pre-packaged words and phrases on such résumés are used most often by big, national résumé-writing firms -- mills that crank out résumés faster than you can apply for ten jobs online.

Sometimes fronted by a "nationally-recognized résumé-writing personality," these firms use a stable of poorly-paid writers to crank out "custom résumés" for their clients. You pay for the renowned skills of the "personality" who leads the firm, but you get the same snippets of cut-and-pasted verbiage that other clients get.

Out they go with the trash
To you it's a clever, classy marketing document that makes you look good. To the manager who receives hundreds or thousands of résumés each month, the ones written by these résumé mills read like pulp fiction. Beside the other résumés on the manager's desk, it's obvious they were all written from a template by the same firm. Your expensive "custom résumé" doesn't look so custom to the manager who gets more of the same. Out it goes with the trash.

Résumé mills exposed
The arrogance and audacity of these résumé mills was bound to expose them. A clever marketing trick now reveals just how they operate.

Certain résumé-writing firms promote their services with the oldest trick in the book: "Try us for free!" But they put an added spin on this offer. "Let us review your current résumé... it might be costing you a great job!" They offer a free résumé critique. You send them your current résumé, they tear it to shreds, and they suggest you might want to have it re-written -- unless you want to reveal to employers how unworthy you are. Some of these reviews are downright insulting. They all play on your fears of inadequacy and failure.

Free résumé critiques have become a marketing staple of the big mills. It's how they snare nervous job hunters. But the question is, how could these firms possibly provide free reviews to everyone who sends in their résumé?

If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. These firms use crib sheets.

The crib sheet
An Ask The Headhunter reader recently shared the crib sheet that one résumé mill apparently uses to "critique" résumés sent in by unsuspecting prospects. Yep, it's a template: Canned statements about résumés, organized by "problem" and chock full of comments that can be used and re-used by... well, a roomful of monkeys that critique your résumé by copying and pasting pre-written comments into an e-mail. These are special monkeys that are very good at making you feel very nervous about the quality of your résumé.

The good news is, maybe that résumé you wrote isn't so bad after all. And, you're probably a lot smarter than a monkey.

The crib sheet is re-printed below. It even includes sales-pitch scripts. What résumé-writing firm is it from? That's a good question. And that's my challenge to Ask The Headhunter readers.

Take the Résumé-Critique Challenge
I'm guessing that many of you have taken the "résumé critique challenge" from some of these résumé mills. And you've received seemingly-personal, detailed critiques. My challenge to you is this: Read through the crib sheet below and then check the critique you were given. Do you find the same comments and phrases? If you do, please e-mail me the entire critique with the common wording highlighted, and with the full e-mail source information intact. And let me know which résumé firm provided it.

If enough readers share their critiques with common wording identified, then we'll know which résumé mill this crib sheet came from.

By the way, my favorite "critique" on the crib sheet is this one:

Resume is obviously a template…
You have chosen the Word resume template to use. This relegates your resume to looking like about 2 million other resumes. Unfortunately, hiring managers and recruiters can also spot a template a mile away and it reflects badly on the candidate.

Does your résumé critique look "like about two million other ones?" Maybe it was written by a monkey from a template...

If the firm that wrote and uses this crib sheet would like to own up to it and prove its copyright, I will remove it from this web site upon request. But of course, they will be admitting they've been scamming you by using a crib sheet to write a "custom résumé review." Shame, shame. It was a clever marketing ploy until people figured it out. Now, well, now these guys look like mud. And they pride themselves on custom writing!

Caveat emptor
I continue to advise job hunters to do the hard work of writing their own résumés, just as I advise them to conduct their own job search without relying on headhunters. Nonetheless, some people will use headhunters and they will turn to professional résumé writers. To them I say, make sure you're using the best. You'll know them from their happy clients.

Chime In!

Drop by to discuss this topic on the Ask The Headhunter Blog!

  

I know some very good, honest résumé writers. They spend considerable time to understand their clients and to produce unique, accurate résumés. The best of them border on being saints for the added coaching and advice they provide. Of course, quality ranges across a spectrum. Due diligence is important, and I suggest checking a résumé writer's references. (Especially if you try to find a résumé writer from an ad, like the ones Google automatically posts on these web pages. I make no endorsements.)

What irks me is that like other legitimate businesses, résumé writers have to compete with monkeys-on-computers that conspire to turn the résumé business into a high-volume racket that profits from people's fears and thrives by selling what is largely a worthless, canned product. To those mills I have one thing to say: The sooner you are exposed and go out of business, the better.


CRITIQUE RESPONSES

Summary / Profile Section

Resume is only one page…

You have gotten some bad advice somewhere that a resume has to be kept to one page. That is an old rule that went out with typewriters and paper resumes stored in filing cabinets. A one-page resume was something that was achievable when most people only had one or two employers in their entire lifetimes. That's changed now. Employers want to know more about your experience and track record so they can make an educated decision on whether to proceed with you in the hiring process. By being skimpy in your information, you make them guess and they won't do that - they'll just move on to other resumes that provide a more complete picture of the candidates. You also reduce keyword optimization for the online databases. Computers don't care if it's one page!

Resume developed several years ago…

You mentioned that the resume was originally developed several years ago. A resume isn't like a Twinkie with an infinite shelf life. : The employment market changes rapidly. When you originally had the resume developed, the market was completely different than it is now. Employers and recruiters now have different needs and technology has changed which impacts the hiring process. While a resume may have worked before, that does not mean it will work now in today's market.

Resume has an objective statement…

Take out the objective. Objectives aren't used anymore because they don't speak to the needs of the employer but rather to your needs. That's a weak marketing message. Start with a good summary.

Summary/Profile doesn't stand alone or isn't strong…

The summary is pretty weak and ineffective - it lacks impact and does not establish a strong focus or interest. A test of a summary is to take it completely out of the document and see if it stands by itself. If it communicates your record of achievement, your experience level, your value, your industry, and intimates what your immediate career goal is, then it is a good summary. Summaries shouldn't be wordy, overly descriptive passages but rather just what the name implies - a summary. On the other hand, a summary shouldn't be vague and full of soft-skills. The summary should give the reader the main points of information - experience, job title, industry, expertise, and (sometimes) education level. Of all the sections of the resume, the summary is the most important because it gets read the most and sets the tone/focus for the rest of the document.

Summary/Profile section is too long and wordy…

The summary section is overly wordy and bogged down in description and information that are not needed to make an introduction to the reader and establish the focus of the resume. It gives the impression you are trying to cover all the possible bases but the result is something that is difficult to read and grasp in the short time a resume is read. A test of a summary is to take it completely out of the document and see if it stands by itself. If it communicates your record of achievement, your experience level, your value, your industry, and intimates what your immediate career goal is, then it is a good summary. There are too many vague statements that EVERY candidate claims and that are not unique to you. Summaries shouldn't be wordy, overly descriptive passages but rather just what the name implies - a summary. It gives the reader the main points of information they seek - experience, job title, industry, expertise, and (sometimes) education level. Of all the sections of the resume, the summary is the most important because it gets read the most and sets the tone/focus for the rest of the document.

Resume doesn't have a summary/intro section at all…

The most valuable real estate in the resume - the first half of the first page - is wasted on this resume by not having a great, hard-hitting summary that establishes the focus of the resume and gives a quick overview of what you have to offer. This section is the most-read section of the resume by hiring managers (it's the "hook") and the opportunity is wasted by not having a summary. A test of a summary is to take it completely out of the document and see if it stands by itself. If it communicates your record of achievement, your value, your industry, and intimates what your immediate career goal is, then it is a good summary.

Resume has a highlights section at the top or in the top section…

You have pulled your career highlights out into a separate section at the top. Instead of highlighting them, this actually weakens them because it takes them out of a frame of reference for the reader. The reader doesn't know where, when, or under what market conditions you achieved these things. Are they ten years old? Are they recent? Are they all from one position? Move them back into the experience chronology where they can appear with the jobs with which they are associated. Employers will probably skip them if you leave them where they are and go straight to the experience anyway so put the important facts in the experience section. Think of it like a newspaper - if you pull the first sentence out of each news article and detach them from the headline and supporting information, it is confusing.

You can't tell what the person is targeting from the summary…

The summary does not adequately narrow the focus of your job search, something a resume needs to do from the very beginning at the top of the first page. Your opening profile or summary should immediately set in the mind of the reader the following: immediate target, level of experience, industry expertise, and value of your experience. Instead, your summary seems more like a shotgun blast - you are trying to cover everything but as a result you don't come across as a valuable contributor toward anything.

The cover letter is in the same file as the resume…

First, take the cover letter out of the file and put it in a separate file. Most employers read the cover letter AFTER the resume anyway so it's best to either copy/paste it in the body of the email to which you attach the resume or make it a separate file altogether.

Content

Resume is a functional format resume…

The format you are using (called a functional or skills resume), is one that is LOATHED by executive recruiters and line management, for several reasons: (1) they have to read the entire thing before they can get a feel for you and I can guarantee they will not do this, (2) the reader is left to try and figure out when/where/how you did the things you have listed in the top section of your resume. Trust me, the reader will not do ANY work on your behalf, so it is not wise to leave it to them to try and 'figure it out'. More than likely, they will simply move to the next resume, and (3) when people use this format, it is a red flag to the reader that they usually are trying to hide something. We work with hundreds of hiring managers from all sorts of industries and almost to a person they report they detest the functional format. Change the organization to a reverse chronological so it won't appear that you are trying to hide something (like a prison term).

Education details come before the experience section…

Don't lead the resume with your education. You are not a new graduate and your education is not going to be your best selling point. For someone at your level of career, employers will be more interested in your experience. Only someone who is newly graduated and only has education to offer should start the resume with the education section. Move the education and training to the end of the resume.

Resume puts all job titles with each employer in a list at the beginning…

You've lumped all your positions with each company into a listing at the beginning of each job section. This effectively negates the benefit you would gain from showing career progression and increase in level if you treated each position separately. I realize that many of the positions had similar job descriptions but the accomplishments of each should be different. Break the jobs out separately and handle them in reverse chronological order, making sure to highlight what you accomplished in each position.

Job descriptions are too thin or poorly written…

The job descriptions are too weak, bland, and unexciting. They don't give a clear, dynamic picture of the scope of your positions or career. The ideal job description briefly summarizes your duties in paragraph format and then uses bullets for your accomplishments and results achieved to maximize their impact. Poor job descriptions don't paint a picture of the scope of your job and fail to create a good frame of reference for your achievements. A powerful resume has job descriptions that start out strong and sustain interest by emphasizing key skills and doing so in a brief, powerful way. Leave out low-level information and concentrate on the important, complex activities that provide broad scope to your experience and support your target. Don't be vague but rather try to get a lot of impact in a short amount of space. You want to communicate strong abilities, depth, and unique qualities - not sound like a job advertisement or something out of the HR manual.

Job descriptions are much too long and wordy…

The job descriptions are too protracted and wordy for the most important information to stand out. It is not necessary to list everything you did in a position. You've used long, flowing sentences rather than tight, hard-hitting phrases. Concentrate on the important information and leave out low-level tasks and duties. Don't be vague but rather try to get a lot of impact in a short amount of space. You want to communicate strong abilities, depth, and unique qualities - not sound like a job advertisement. The ideal job description BRIEFLY summarizes your most important duties in paragraph format and then uses bullets to draw attention to the accomplishments (or results statements) to maximize their impact.

No achievements stand out or bulleted items are not achievements but just more job description…

Almost the entire content is written as task-based information. Task-based means it tells "what you did". To be effective and create excitement, it needs to be results-based - "what was achieved as a RESULT of what you did?" Employers are looking for results. They want to know you have solved problems similar to theirs and that you achieved the results for which they are looking. What you have is just job description and it is going to be very similar to all the other qualified candidates. The ones who get the interviews will be those who show the results of their work. Show the reader what you have achieved!

Resume is a sales person's or some other job where performance is judged on quantitative data but they don't have enough or any of it in the content…

I'm sure you know what a numbers-oriented field you are in and the accomplishments need to put more emphasis on specific, measurable highlights that reflect your ability to produce those numbers for your employer. Employers look for potential in the quantitative evidence you show of your success so make sure you get that type of information in the resume in a highlighted way.

Resume goes back further than ten years in detail…

There is too much work history detailed. Employers are generally interested only in the past 10-15 years experience because it is what is most relevant to the challenges they face today. Cut off or simply list employers/job titles/dates that are far back in time. If you are concerned about showing depth, there are ways to truncate your older experience while still showing you have good background from which to draw upon.

Overall content is thin, short, or bland…

The content of the resume is too thin and weak. It does not generate interest or show how you are any different than the other candidates against whom you are competing. You have not provided good description of your roles and responsibilities and your accomplishments are scanty and vague. Employers need to have a good idea of where you have been in your career, what roles you have held, what levels of responsibilities, and some of the key challenges you have faced. If they have to guess or assume something, they won't do it - they will just go to the next resume that has more detail. They don't have time to chase after "maybe" candidates. They will only call the candidates who have the best qualifications on paper.

Overall content is too long, wordy, or unfocused…

The entire resume is overly descriptive and wordy. You have too much "stuff" or irrelevant information in it. It's a "data dump" - you weren't sure what to include and what to delete so you just included everything. It appears that you are confused about your strategy and don't want to miss a job because you left out one little detail. Including all this irrelevant/redundant information actually weakens the resume. Find your focus and cut out what doesn't directly support that focus. Cut out wordiness and over-description. Cut out redundancies. Put everything into tight writing instead of narrative. It's a novel instead of a resume. Employers won't read it because it takes too much time. They can't get a clear picture of your background without spending fifteen minutes reading it word-for-word.

Resume content reads like a job advertisement or has no impact…

The language of the resume has poor impact, does not generate excitement, and does not position you as a leader in your area of expertise. It's "average" - not what you want when you are trying to sell your abilities and position yourself above the competition. It reads like every other resume and will not inspire most readers to make contact with you.

Content is written in full sentences with lots of description…

Resumes are written in a technique called "tight writing" or essentially, verb phrases, where the subject is generally understood rather than voiced. Articles (the, a, an) are minimally used in tight writing and only the core message is voiced. You have long, flowing sentences that describe every action and motivation - information the employer simply is not interested in at this point in the process. Some information is irrelevant and some is redundant. You are trying to accomplish the interview with the resume and it just won't work. Employers don't have time to read all this.

Resume includes information protected under fair hiring laws (DOB, marital status, race, etc.)…

Employers are very wary of anything on a resume that might later result in a lawsuit for hiring discrimination. It's safer for them to just reject the resume at the start if it intimates anything that reveals religions, gender, date of birth, marital status, children, etc. The benefit to your candidacy from this information is minimal, too, so it's better to play it safe and take this out of the resume.

Resume talks about hobbies or other irrelevant info…

Keep personal interests, hobbies, etc. off your resume. This information adds nothing to your value as the best candidate to do the job. Employers aren't interested in your hobbies - they just want to know if you can bring value to their organization.

Resume lists previous salaries…

Never, ever list your salary on your resume. You limit yourself by either underpricing or overpricing. You don't want the employer to make a judgment on your abilities based on your past "price". Sometimes, people are underpaid and sometimes overpaid. Salary doesn't correlate to value.

Resume is from a foreign national applying to US companies within the US and it is in CV form rather than resume form…

We don't use CVs in the US but rather resumes. Resumes are very different than CVs and provide different information, different format, and use different, more aggressive language than a CV. The simple fact that you are using a CV to apply for US jobs shows you don't understand the US job market and that is a message you don't want to communicate to potential employers. You want to come across in your presentation as being as informed as any US citizen would be about the market, especially if the position you are targeting might involve hiring of other employees.

Resume contains reference names and contact information…

Never put references on a resume. Employers don't need this information at this stage of the game and you are putting private contact information into circulation that should not be in the public realm without caution due to increased risk of identity theft.

Resume could benefit from having company descriptions included…

A brief description of each company where you have worked would help give the reader a better idea of your background. Company descriptions that include main product/service delivered, annual revenues, size, number of employees, markets, etc. help the reader get a clearer picture of the environments in which you have worked. The description doesn't have to be long. Something along the lines of "Fortune 1000 company producing manufactured, durable goods for the North American market. Annual revenues in excess of $500 million and 1400 employees."

Resume includes "reason for leaving" for prior positions…

There is absolutely no justification to include your reasons for leaving a position on a resume or in a cover letter. The reason is irrelevant. Instead of concentrating on the past, you should be showing the reader your potential.

Design/Format

Resume contains mechanical errors…

There are NUMEROUS mechanical errors in the resume ranging from misspellings to capitalization problems to syntax issues. This gives a very bad impression, especially of someone at your level. Employers expect more attention to detail from higher salary, higher skilled candidates such as you. Hourly wage earners can get by with errors but you can't.

Resume is ugly or has an outdated appearance…

I would recommend a more professional design or look-and-feel to the document to provide a more executive impression. A lot can be done with the formatting and design to improve first visual impressions while still maintaining a conservative appearance. You wouldn't go to an interview in a cheap suit so don't make your resume appear in one either. This is especially important for candidates targeting higher salaries (such as you are) because employers expect you to have a more pulled-together, slick presentation of yourself because they expect you to give a professional presentation to customers, vendors, and others with whom you would be dealing at your target level. Visual impression is the first impression so make it good.

Resume has no email address on it…

You have forgotten to include your email address on your resume. Don't ever make an employer hunt down your email or phone number. Employers just don't have time. They'll just go on to the next resume instead. If you are going to leave off something, leave off the street address. Employers don't need it to contact you and you preserve a little privacy on the Internet by eliminating it.

Job seeker uses his work email on the resume…

Don't use your work email on the resume. That's bad form. It gives prospective employers the impression that you use company time and resources for personal things (and worst of all, your job search!)

Resume is obviously a template…

You have chosen the Word resume template to use. This relegates your resume to looking like about 2 million other resumes. Unfortunately, hiring managers and recruiters can also spot a template a mile away and it reflects badly on the candidate. It's very important to make your resume memorable and even formatting can help. Another negative about using a template is that rather than fitting the format to your experience and content, you have to fit your content to the format. The result of that is like trying to fit a size 10 foot into a size 7 shoe. It can be done but the result isn't pretty and it doesn't work very well.

Resume is written in paragraph form or has big paragraph-like sections of more than 5-7 lines…

The huge chunks of text almost assure the reader won't read it. A resume is read differently - the summary is read and then the rest of the document is scanned quickly with job titles, bullet statements, and other highlighted material being read first. Total reading time is about 45 seconds. If a resume can't be read that quickly, it won't be read.

Resume has long lists of bullets…

Long lists of bulleted items become moot. The purpose of bullets is to draw attention and they are usually best reserved for results and accomplishments. By using too many, using them to begin every line, or using them to indicate beginnings of paragraphs you lose the initial intent of pulling the reader's eye to the content. Shorten bulleted lists to no more than five and use them only for results or accomplishments. Don't use bullets to simply mark beginnings of paragraphs or in long lists.

Resume is choppy or disorganized…

The resume isn't formatted and organized to give the reader what he/she seeks quickly. Your organization of the resume shows you don't understand how a resume is read. Resumes aren't read start to finish like a book. Instead, the summary is read and then the rest of the document is scanned quickly with job titles, bullet statements, and other highlighted material being read first. The primary interests of hiring managers come in the following order: summary, job titles, experience, bullets, education.

Mechanics

Resume is written in passive voice or mixed between…

You vacillate between active voice and passive voice throughout the document. To be effective, a resume should be written in active voice. Harbingers of the passive voice are "responsibilities included", "responsible for", "duties included" or noun phrases tied with prepositions such as "Quality member of" or "Representative of". In the active voice, the subject acts. In the passive voice, the subject is acted upon. The active voice is more natural, direct, vigorous and emphatic - traits you want your resume to have in tone.

Resume is in first person…

You have written the document in narrative language as if it were an autobiography or a letter. You use personal pronouns throughout ("I", "me", "my", etc.) which is awkward and incorrect syntax. A resume must be written in a language that can be scanned quickly for meaning rather than as a book is written where the reader reads it from beginning to end. A resume isn't read from beginning to end; most readers read the summary and then scan the rest quickly paying attention to information that is brought to the fore through formatting, arrangement and order. In the narrative format, the reader can't do that so you kill the effectiveness of the content you have labored to detail. Take out all those personal pronouns - there shouldn't be a single one in the resume.

Resume uses the same initial word too much… You have initial word redundancies throughout. That means you have consecutive sentences or bullets starting with the same verb or word and/or you overuse some of the same verbs or beginning words of sentences. Change up your wording. Redundant wording will put your reader to sleep through sheer monotony.

Strategy

Considering your career situation and the types of jobs you are pursuing, your resume is definitely not marketing you in your best light. It doesn't pull its weight by convincing the reader of your qualifications, instead merely assuming the reader will work to find what is best about you - definitely NOT what you want. Right now you are not giving the reader the right information to make an educated decision about your abilities.

The resume does little to convince the reader of your value or that you can make a difference. It primarily describes actions not results. You must generate excitement and interest in a resume but this document is not accomplishing that. The resume positions you for a lower level job and lower salary than you desire.

You are in a business/position where the numbers tell the tale. Unfortunately, the resume does a poor job of getting your performance data across in a powerful way, concentrating instead on aspects of the job that are common to all candidates. Because of this, your resume does not stand out in the crowd nor does it position you powerfully against your competition in the market.

Sales Responses

Client wants a menu of services…

We really don't have a menu of services because our job search tools are subjective for each client. They are customized and tailored, so each client can utilize what he/she needs. Some clients need interview coaching, for example, while others do not. Typically, if a client needs assistance with job search, we will confer with him/her and outline some ideas. Again -- specific to the client's goals and criteria (some want a nationwide search, some want to only search in their "backyard"). What you should know, however, is that the services are priced at between $99 and $200. None are more than $200.

Client needs convincing of our qualifications…

Oh... you are asking me now to convince you to use our firm and not another resume service. I am a TERRIBLE sales person!! I'm a writer and analyst. My strength comes from knowing what you are up against and pointing it out to you, and of course, then seeing the success of our clients after they have their resume redone.

The fact that about 50 organizations and associations retain us as their Resume Expert for their members also is an excellent indicator as to our quality and expertise.

I realize you are being diligent in researching firms before making a selection - and that's a good thing. However, I would find it hard to believe that other firms (and I know nearly everyone in this industry) have credentials that match ours. We serve as the resume expert for about 50 different associations/organizations, including as you know, theladders.com, which only accepts a handful of firms to work with their members. Also, we have our guarantee which many other firms do not, as they are not as confident in their product.

If these items do not make you feel that we are the right firm for you, then perhaps we're not, as we like to team up with clients who feel comfortable working with us. Resume writing is a partnership, and if you are not confident in the person's ability, it only makes the process of job search more stressful.

Responses to price objections…

Clients who retain our firm see this as an investment in their career. Competition is so tough these days that people are savvy to the fact that they are first being judged on their paperwork (resume and cover letter).

We're not for everyone, and if you feel all right in risking a potential dream job, then yes, I guess you should make your decision based on price.

Unfortunately, we can't offer a discount. Our quotes are based on the complexity of the individual project. To discount, we'd have to cut corners somewhere in the process and we just don't cut corners. Our quality of work is our hallmark and we won't sacrifice quality just to make a sale.

General process responses…

We send you the confirmation and the questionnaire together. Once you get that back to us, it's generally 3-5 business days for completion of the whole thing. We're pretty fast because we know you are waiting on us so you can get started on your job search.

The samples on the website are just a general method of giving clients an opportunity to see our style and formatting, and that each clients' resume is different. Since we're published in about 30 career books, each sample would look different to show a variety of formats.

I'm sorry. We can only provide one critique per client. Beyond that, and it gets into consulting and editing - services for which we charge. I'm sure you understand.


Have you been scammed with a "free resume critique?" Does the critique you were given include verbatim phrases from the crib sheet above? Then please e-mail me the entire critique with the common wording highlighted, and with the full e-mail source information intact. And let me know which resume firm provided it.

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